Brussels Griffon mix

Dog Adoption, Personally

Today’s topic is personal. Yes, I’m a dog adoption mom. All three of my babies are dog adoptions. It’s been a raging success. But there’s a very personal example of a dog adoption failure, and I came *this close* to not saying anything about it. But I need your help. It’s killing me inside.

Brussels Griffon mix for adoption
Gadget is a Brussels Griffon mix. Maybe mixed with Chihuahua? Who knows. He’s adorable.

It’s not killing me inside because I did the wrong thing. My mother didn’t do the wrong thing, either. This dog adoption just hasn’t worked out. We couldn’t have known, really. And I don’t blame my friend who found the dog. She absolutely did everything right.

Brussels Griffon mix
He’s so calm, and poses so nicely. What a sweet little Brussels mix.

Gadget seems to be a Brussels Griffon mix. He came to us as a stray. Cursory exams said he was in good health. A further, in-depth exam found perineal hernias and infected anal sacs. So Gadget has had major surgery already in the five months he’s been with my mom. My mom did everything she could to restore him to good health, and now he’s in amazing health.

Adorable mutt
How can you help but love this face? He’s such a sweetheart.

He’s an adorable little guy. He came to us intact, which seems to be a no-no for toy males after a certain age. It leads to things like perineal hernias. Again, totally not the fault of any known parties involved. And now it’s repaired and good. Gadget is in great health.

Brussels Griffon - ugly or cute?
Gadget, a rescued Brussels Griffon mix, is a dominant male with a Napoleon Complex. He swears he’s cuter than Chewy.

So what’s the problem? From the beginning Gadget has been a biter. Not angry biting, at first. Before we knew about the health issues, it was a grab with his mouth to say, “Don’t touch me there. It hurts.” We respected that. Then it became, “This is my lap. Back off,” to other dogs. Then it became a snarl and bite of, “Don’t stop petting me.” Or “Don’t move me. I have to be on your lap. I have to be closest to you in the bed.”

Is it a resource guarding of the human? Small dog syndrome? Dominance issues? We don’t know for sure. But with all the calm correctives my mom musters up, as well as separation from her when it continues (biting hurts), he continues. The vet even prescribed Prozac, which he’s been on the last month. And he’s still randomly biting.

Cute Brussels Griffon mx
Gadget is probably a Brussels Griffon mix. He’s about Chewy’s age, maybe a little older, nine pounds something. His ears and tail weren’t docked at birth. Tiny but tough. Definitely a snuggler.

Before you jump in with both feet, my mom has been a dog owner her entire life. And she’s a researcher, so she’s looked at every technique for handling this well, using what makes the most sense for his behavior and size and breed. Unfortunately, her little Honey Shih Tzu is suffering from this as well. Honey has become a shrinking violet in the home.

Y’all, this dog adoption is a failure. Please don’t beat me up about it. I’m already beating myself up more than you can know. What I need now is to find him a home with someone who knows and loves toy dogs. Somewhere where he’ll be an only dog, or the only small dog with large dogs. He’s a lap dog. He needs someone who understands him and is patient.

Gadget the Brussels Griffon
Gadget, the Brussels Griffon mutt, stares holes in Jones Natural Chews before he consumes them. And he dares the other dogs to come near his treats. Grr.

So please help me out? Currently Gadget is in my home, a place which is familiar to him. And already my Chewy is reluctant to jump in my lap because of him. See? He needs to be the only small dog in the home.

No one like to admit defeat, y’all, but I’m big enough to raise the white flag. And hoping that someone will take it and help me out. Please. And thank you.

Until I write again …

Flea

P.S. I’m smack in the middle of the country (Tulsa) and will drive to meet someone. Email me if you think you can help, please? Fleabyte @ gmail dot com

10 thoughts on “Dog Adoption, Personally

  1. Wow I am so sorry. I am also having biting issue with Bitsie. Is it the name? She has not hurt me yet and I don’t let her have the upper hand but she has issues for sure. I think it is from being crated to the point of insanity. I wanted to use her crate as a time out place but everyone said no. Call Ceaser maybe he needs some new material for his TV show. If he helps you with Gadget maybe I can learn something for Bitsie. I keep telling myself that it takes time. Mercy was a handful of bad behaviors and now she is wonderful. Bitsie has worn me completely out, but she is not spayed yet and she is very young. Hopefully rest is coming for both Mercy and me! I am sorry Flea. Maybe you should see if you can find a foster situation for Chewy’s sake. Sad story.
    Karen McGivney recently posted..Moth Balls—and dog talesMy Profile

  2. It is always hard to make a decision like this,but it definitely sounds like Gadget needs to be an only dog. We had a mini Schnauzer that had serious issues with biting. It was before the vets gave medicines like Prozac. They are lawsuits on four-legs when they start biting everyone. I hope that you find a great home for Gadget. I’m sure someone will love him. ♥
    M. K. Clinton recently posted..Mad About Russell MadnessMy Profile

  3. I am sorry it did not work out. I hope you can find him a good home and it isn’t too difficult with his issues. Sometimes things just do not work out and the kindest thing is to admit it and make changes. I really do think you should work on NILFF training while he is with you. It might make things a little better in your household dynamic.
    2 Brown Dawgs recently posted..Thunder Keeping Fit At 9My Profile

  4. Oh, Flea, so sorry it isn’t working out with this pup and your mom. I don’t know what to do about the biting issues, nor do I know anyone who might want a dog like this one. I hope you can find a good solution for everyone soon.
    Emma recently posted..Dogs In MotionMy Profile

  5. Oh, I saw your comments about this on FB and never put it together that it was your Mom’s dog you were talking about….I know how much you did to help Gadget. I wish I had some answers to help you, but all I can do is share your story and hope the right person for Gadget will see it. It’s hard to try to do the right thing by adopting/rescuing and then not have it work out….but I think you and your Mom have tried everything you could to make it work. Stop beating yourself up over it. It’s my feeling that you have to consider the pets that were there first and if it’s hurting them, then it’s time to try something different.
    Jan K recently posted..#52Snapshots – “Travel”My Profile

  6. From what you’ve said, I think he has a problem with resource guarding. Is he snapping or breaking skin when he bites? You could try contacting some Brussels Griffon rescues. They usually will take mixes as well. I’m not sure about the bite liability though.
    Have you tried talking to a trainer or behaviorist? Also Prozac can have the effect of actually lowering bite inhibition…

  7. Oh Flea I am sorry it’s not working out! Don’t beat yourself up! I think the best thing would be to contact a Brussels rescue. They will be able to find him a home that meets all of his specific needs and it sounds like he has a lot. It’s definitely not fair to Chewy and Honey and I think he would be happier in a small dog only home. I know you tried everything so far and I give you props for that! Please let me know if I can do anything to help I know this is tough. Hugs!

  8. oops I worded that weird. I agree that he would do best as the only small dog in a home not in a home with only small dogs lol

  9. Good luck. I rescued an OES that had mountains of issues (diagnosed PTSD among them and phobias too numerous to list) thinking my decades of dog ownership, patience and loving home would all him to return to being just a dog, not a bundle of anxiety etc. Sadly after spending hundreds of dollars on professional training, tons of patience, all the love a pet could possible receive, I came to the conclusion, I just wasn’t going to the the human that rescued Finn. I cried and mourned but knew the best solution would be another home situation. I feel for you because I’ve been there. Know you and your mom are doing the right thing; we’ll all be sending positive energy that Gadget’s new fur-ever home will be perfect. 🙂
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